Gordon Willis is regarded by all of his peers as one of the greatest cinematographers in the history of film, and for many as the greatest of all time, period. Meeting with him only served to have him rise in our esteem from previous. Without wanting to use hyperbole, between lensing The Godfather trilogy, many of Woody Allen’s best films (including Annie Hall, Manhattan, Stardust Memories, Interiors, and others) and several master thrillers for Alan J. Pakula (All the President’s Men, Klute, The Parallax View, The Devil’s own, and others), Gordon Willis practically single-handedly re-invented the craft of cinematography and the nature by which films were and are composed, lit, and executed. He has left an indelible mark on the craft of filmmaking and we are delighted to present him in a two part interview here. We hope you enjoy a small window into a great man’s achievements and approach.
Check out Gordon on IMDB
Running Time: 1:26:48
Location: Mr. Willis’ home
9:20 – On directing and editing
15:00 – Lighting ANNIE HALL
22:00 – There is no formula.
22:45 – THE GODFATHER
24:30 – On the notion of what is craft.
31:30 – On cutting
33:15 – Gordon Willis’ influence
37:25 – The idea of simple vs. complex
40:15 – KLUTE
43:20 – MANHATTAN
47:30 – Working with Woody Allen
50:30 – STARDUST MEMORIES
56:15 – THE GODFATHER II
1:02:30 – Working with Francis Ford Coppola
1:08:00 – ALL THE PRESIDENTS MEN
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